A weekend outside the flat

Finally, a weekend of activity outside of the flat. On Friday, Jitka and I went to Kino Atlas to see Factotum. In spite of fine performances by Matt Dillon and Lili Taylor, the movie pissed me off. It⿿ll piss off anyone who has read a fair amount of Bukowski, especially if they have seen Barfly. In fact, the only thing that Factotum inspired me to do was rent Barfly, though I⿿m not sure if and where I can get it on DVD here in Prague.

Dillon⿿s Henry Chinaski is more phlegmatic and sympathetic than Mickey Rourke⿿s. The former barely cracks a smile throughout the whole film (he sort of manages one when his horses come in), while the latter is constantly cracking wise. The only scene that really makes an impact is one in which Dillon delivers a poem (in voice-over) while watching a stripper do impossible gymnastics on a pole. The rest of the film is a hodgepodge of scenes that are, at best, chuckle-worthy. Worth renting if you⿿re into Bukowski, though I could see how it might be more enjoyable for those who know nothing about the man.

Our original plan had been to watch Factotum then go boozing. All I really craved after the flick was a cigarette, and, much to Jitka⿿s chagrin, I gave into that craving. We hit Soft Bellies for a couple of beers and called it a night.

On Saturday, after a very pleasant lie-in, we had a rather unsuccessful day of clothes shopping. I⿿ve said it before and I⿿ll say it again ⿿ Prague sucks for men⿿s clothes. I mean, what⿿s with all the frickin pastels this spring? I don⿿t feel like I can get away with baggy hip-hop or skater styles, and I damn all designers who insist on plastering perfectly good clothes with idiotic images, logos and expressions straight to hell (especially the folks at Clockhouse). I suppose it⿿s a good thing that I don⿿t go out all that much these days. I⿿m not what you would call a fashion whore, but I like to look half-decent when I⿿m out and about. Prague⿿s men⿿s clothiers are not helping whatsoever.

Following our shopping non-spree, Jitka went out with one of her friends and I decided to stay in town and get drunk and stoned with the city on my own. Ended up having an alright time, cruising from Marquis de Sade (which supposedly re-opened in November ⿿ how could I have missed that?) to Soft Bellies to U Zpevacku to Tulip.

Marquis was a disappointment. All the cool artwork is gone ⿿ even that awesome massive Jackson Pollock-esque piece across from the bar. The furniture is new-ish ⿿ meaning the owners have replaced the ugly half-gutted couches with ugly second-hand couches that even the most senile of babickas would turn their noses up at. The chimp with the pith helmet? Gone. The mirrored bar? Gone. The happy hour? Gone. And on top of that, a half-liter of Staropramen is a whopping 45 koruna! My ass on a Marquis barstool? Gone.

I ended up overdoing it, being rather out of practice, and while I managed to keep my dinner down, I felt like a pale, squint-eyed target. There was a time when I did this practically every night, waking up sometimes asking myself When exactly was the last day I went without a drink? and not having the slightest idea what the answer might be. Yeah, right, good times.

After sobering up a bit with a cigarette and some, ahem, fresh air, I parked my ass in Tulip for a while, where I had the good fortune of hearing a couple of dudes do a few excellent Radiohead covers. When I slurred my props to one of them (I think his name was Mishka, not sure) he said he remembered seeing me perform at the Globe and in the Tulip Lounge. Not sure whether he said he liked what I did, but I suppose it was kind of nice to be recognised, though not in the condition I was in.

Ah well, someday the comeback⿿ someday⿿

Mar 27, 10:45 (Filed under: Out and About in Prague, Film )

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  1. I’m not sure what’s more surprising – that MdS reopened or that Tulip’s still a going concern. I popped in there with my folks in November (after the fiasco with the folks who took over from Scotty Mac) and the folks there had some serious ass/elbow issues.

    Given 45Kc ‘pramens, my ass won’t be returning to the MdS stools anytime soon either, though I gotta ask, did someone repair the support pillar underneath the joint? I heard the sklep had some distressing structural problems that made me get a lump recalling how full that place used to get.


    Bishop    Mar 27, 12:39    #
  2. Lol… I feel the exact same way re. that basement support pillar. I know nothing about that I’m afraid.

    What are ass/elbow issues? I get the “lazy ass” implication, but elbow? As in elbow grease, or, in Tulip’s case, lack thereof?

    Tulip was packed on Saturday, and I can only assume that business is still good there. One thing I forgot to mention in my entry – the crowd was as rude and irritating as a pickled egg, code-red chilli, skunky beer fart on a crowded B-line metro train. Beaucoup props to the lads who were playing to an ignorant pack of louts and bimboes who were too wrapped up in drowning out the music with all their braying and bullshit. That is one aspect of performing I don’t miss at all – playing over the crowd. Talk about disrespect, not only to the performer, but to those in the audience who actually want to listen to the performer. Jerks.


    Patrick    Mar 27, 15:37    #
  3. MdS always has and always will be full of loud idiot expats – it sucked ten years ago, it sucks now. Although i hear the toilets have improved – is this true? Not that it will influence my visiting habits. I always hated the place – can you tell?


    coco    Apr 4, 10:33    #
  4. Toilets haven’t improved. The place still stinks of mold.

    I never found MdS full of expats, as I never saw the same crowd twice in there. Sure some of the same faces, but on the whole it was different every time I went in. Loud, usually, idiots, often, but you get that at any bar in any town, no matter how cool it is.

    Anyway, now MdS is way overpriced and lacking whatever charm I felt it had, so yeah, it sucks now.

    I remember having a couple of drinks with you there – you never mentioned any of this then…


    Patrick    Apr 4, 11:40    #

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